Sensory stimulation

Stuart over at Gardening Tips ‘n’ Ideas tagged me (me!) for a meme about 8 things for which I’m thankful. Thanks, Stuart! (I think that’s #1)


cement pond frozen over Yesterday on my walk around the property I decided to look for the shape of winter and although I was intent on *seeing* it, I realized that some of my other senses were raising their hands and saying oo! oo! Pick me! (I’m grateful to have at least 5 senses in full working order)

It might still be technically fall but unlike this time last year (warm through Nov., then a snowflake on the 3rd and warm again), it’s been bitter cold enough to give the ground that firm soft crust that has a little bounce to it. My feet shouted out about that. (thankful now for the insulated boots they complained about over the summer)nearly flattened cardoon (Cynara cardunculus) in the Display Garden
The Display Garden needs a little more tidying (thankful that Gail and Julie say it can wait for a warmer day) – the cardoons are still slightly perky but the cement pond has frozen over. The Water Garden pond has frozen over too (thankful we had some rain to fill it a bit again).Water Garden frozen pond

One of my favorite things about winter is the peek at fabulous naked branch structure and nature’s own ornaments hung for the season. (thankful for enjoying winter – I didn’t always and it sure helps to pass the time!)

Highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum)Button bush - Cephalanthus occidentalis

Japanese flowering crabapple - Malus floribundaDragon’s eye pine - Pinus densiflora ‘Oculus-draconis’

I went right up to the Chinese chestnut for a photo op and – I swear this is a true story – before looking at the tag for the latin name which I had forgotten, I thought “hey this tree is rattling its leaves like castanets!”. Castanea mollisma. You betcha. Castanets are so named because they look like chestnuts, not because they sound like the trees – even though they do. (thankful for learning something new every day)Chinese chestnut - Castanea mollisma

I have to admit my walk was fairly short – it was cold! – I don’t know how Fred and Dan stand it – they’re out all day long and not wusses like me. I went back to the greenhouse, thawed my cracked fingers and dove right into my kind of winter work. I enjoy greenhouse work (like rejuvenating this maiden hair fern) every bit as much as the garden work of summer and I’m thankful that I get to do the work I think I’m meant to do – with people I’m in awe of – in a public garden that I get to share with the world! (- in a nutshell)

Maidenhair fern (Adiantum raddianum or A. cuneatum) in need of a hair cutMaidenhair fern fully shorn

Here’s where I’m supposed to tag others for this meme: I invite any and all who read this to consider yourself “it”. Use the comments box, use your own blog, pass it on!